A Swim and a Sauna

Well, I’ve reached a state of equilibrium.

Today my Pred dose and my kms swum are saying the same number-15mg and 15 kms! This may not happen again for some time, seeing as I am not planning on having to increase to 30 or 40mg if my lungs behave and I can sure help it in the near future, and it will take me at least a few weeks to reach those totals in km’s. I’m pretty chuffed though as I haven’t been feeling too great recently and I am today extremely fatigued after my 3 days at school.

This is the pool I swim in at the club we belong to.

The water is a saline/chlorine mix and does not set my lungs off with nasty fumes. It is also a lovely temperature, never too hot or cold. I chug up and down, a huffin’ and a puffin’ for 40 laps, as it is a 25m pool. This takes me upwards of 30 mins depending on how I am breathing. And after this little lung work-out, I reward myself with a Sauna.

The jacuzzi is at the back of the pool (you can just see the area in the photo). There is a mixed steam room to the left. The saunas however, are single-sex ones in the Mens and Ladies locker rooms.

I cannot tolerate the humidity of steam rooms. To vacation in a place like Florida would mean an instant lung death for me as I am a preferred warm dry air asthmatic. I really need the dry sauna and that wonderful healing heat to dry out the wetness I have in my lungs. It does not cause me to suffer bronchospasm or constriction, like the steam room when I have tried it. I sit on the bottom shelf and close my eyes and imagine I am in the heat of the Palm Springs desert, on vacation. This being said, I have never managed to even stay 10 whole minutes in the sauna, usually managing only around 5!

But I emerge all warm and relaxed with pink cheeks and smiling, having gone in, flaked out and usually still out of breath. I have a routine that seems to work for me in that I breathe in through my nose and out through my mouth in the heat. Weirdly though, my skin seems to remain as dry as a bone, I never sweat or perspire one bit. I don’t seem to have spare water in my body even though I drink like a fish, quite telling as I do seem to suffer from a wet lung asthma not a dry hacking type. I will also have  pre-medicated before my sauna, with about 5 puffs of ventolin straight after my swim, and then I do a proper neb straight after my sauna when I am changing. This is because I tend to get a bit of an instant flare when I stop swimming, and then a more majory flare about 20 mins after swimming. The effort of changing is also pretty routine at setting me off too!

So that’s my daily exercise bread. As long as I am able to, and we continue to be members of this club, this is my preferred PT routine. I have been swimming like this since Jan 1st 2008 and I know it has helped my lung and leg strength, and my confidence.

But seeing as my Hospital Docs do not allow me to put my face in the water, I only swim ‘ladies style’ breast stoke.

So I never get my hair wet!


3 Responses to A Swim and a Sauna

  1. danielle10 says:

    Good for you! I did a bit of swimming in the fall when my legs were feeling the overuse of running! I liked it and felt sooo relaxed after, perhaps I’ll have to give it another go.

  2. Elisheva says:

    I love swimming! Too bad they closed down the pool I used to go to. Swimming can be aweful on my breathing tho. I think it has to do with how much chlorine they put in the water.

  3. Yes-exactly- I love swimming as I can build up to a gentle breathing rhythm without pushing myself too hard. But I don’t go in chlorine pools. There are very few saline pools here but we are lucky that our club has a half and half one. However I don’t go under the water, so I’m well above the fumes!

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